Hoping to hit Pandora where it hurts, online radio service TuneIn just debuted a service to help listeners discover new audio content. “Using the data it gathers from its over 40 million monthly users, TuneIn is now able to provide its users with personalized recommendations, based on the stations, songs and artists they listen to,” TechCrunch reports. TuneIn was also a launch partner for Google’s Google+ sign-in launch, this week.
Not unlike The Wall Street Journal itself, LinkedIn benefits greatly from its corporate clientele, which is happy to spend a share of recruiting resources on the social network. Indeed, the company is now valued at north of $18 billion, up from $4 billion when it went public mid-2011. Ironically, however, “LinkedIn was long an ugly duckling of social media,” WSJ recalls.
What kills social networks? Simply put, when the costs associated with being a member outweigh the benefits. So found the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich after recently performing a digital “autopsy” on fated social network Friendster. “The thinking is that if one person leaves, then his or her friends become more likely to leave as well,” the MIT Technology Review reports.
Forrester analyst James McQuivey suggests that Silicon Valley’s best days are behind it. Why? For one, because “digital disruption,” has gone global, her writes in AllThingsD. “The long-term effect of rising digital disruption will be to redistribute the benefits of the future across the planet, even as it continues to improve the already futuristic valley that started it all.”
Oddly enough, Marissa Mayer’s first misstep as head of Yahoo might have been to order all telecommuting workers back to the office. In effort to appease critics, Yahoo on Tuesday said the move wasn't meant as a broad judgment on the practice of working from home, MercuryNews.com reports. Still, “critics blasted CEO Marissa Mayer, a new mother herself, for seeming to abandon what many view as a progressive approach to helping working parents and other employees juggle conflicting demands.”
AOL debuted its On video network in Canada, this week. The company said it will use a video hub housing more than 500,000 videos, including Canada-specific video content, as the foundation of an AOL On Video Network, FierceOnlineVideo.com reports. American Express Canada has also signed on as the Canadian launch partner of AOL On.
With the help of research firm Triton Research, The Wall Street Journal’s Dennis Berman admits that Twitter might be worth $10 billion. Yes, “Twitter has the potential to match some of the money-gushing properties of the Internet's greatest money gusher, Google.” What’s remarkable, Berman notes, is the fact that “Twitter has been in the money-making game for only three years.”
In recent weeks, mobile app developers using “cookie tracking” to keep tabs on consumer usage have seen their apps rejected by Apple’s App Review team, TechCrunch reports. And, while it may be too early to glean a clear strategy from Apple’s activity, industry insiders suggest that the company is signaling to developers to start transitioning to Apple’s own Ad Identifier technology.
Sorry Spotify, but Google is reportedly working on a subscription music-streaming service of its own. “Negotiations are under way with major record labels to license their music,” reports Bloomberg, citing sources. In addition, “Google … is also discussing renewing deals that cover the use of songs in videos made by consumers.”
Despite their wildly successful mobile partnership, all is not well between Google and Samsung. As The Wall Street Journal reports: “Google executives worry that Samsung has become so big -- the South Korean company sells about 40% of the gadgets that use Google's Android software -- that it could flex its muscle to renegotiate their arrangement and eat into Google's lucrative mobile-ad business.”